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Making an Emergency Call

At some point we all maybe in a situation where we will have to call the Emergency Services, the most common way these days is to call from a mobile phone.

As we all know mobile phone can be a little temperamental when it comes to signal or busy networks, below I will explain how you can maximize your chances of getting through to the emergency services, even if you are in a limited or in a no signal area.

First thing to do when you need to contact the Fire Brigade, Ambulance service, Police or Coastguard from your mobile phone is to dial 112, this is the European Emergency number in fact it is more than just the European emergency number, as it is available in over 80 countries worldwide.

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The 112 number is pre-programmed into every sim card and mobile phone.  When you dial 112 it makes a call in a different way to the normal calls we make, so even when we cannot make a normal voice call, dialing 112 from your mobile, will try to connect to any network provider such as Orange, O2 or T mobile etc.

Even when our phone says ‘network busy’ dialing 112 will prioritize your call and will override the busy network.

You can even phone 112 from someone else’s phone even without their security code, in fact you can still dial 112 from someone else’s phone or your own even when you have no credit.  Even better you could still phone 112 from a modern smart phone that has no credit and no sim card and you would still be able to call and connect to the emergency services.

Initiating a 112 call in a limited/no signal area: –

First thing to do is to turn your back to the wind, this will make it easier to speak with the operator, dial 112 (don’t worry if it doesn’t connect straight away) and wait for one minute, if after one minute the call still hasn’t connected- keeping your back to the wind, swap your phone to the other ear (your head may have been blocking the only signal in the area) and dial 112 and again wait for one minute.

If both attempts have failed to connect all is not lost you can then send a text message (here in the UK) to the emergency services. (You do have to be pre-registered to use this service)

Simply write a text message including the following: –

1) Who you are?

2) Where you are?

3) What the incident is?

4) How many people are hurt?

Because a text message is a small amount of information and text messages go through on a different band width and on a different frequency, this band width has a lot more capacity than that of a voice call, So by sending a text if all else has failed you will have a good chance of getting through to the emergency services.  Once the message has been sent wait three minutes, you should receive a text back from them stating they will be on their way.

How to Register your phone to use emergency text messaging: –

  • Get your mobile phone
  • Send the word register to 112
  • You will receive an automated text back. Read it.
  • Follow instructions of that text message exactly.

Those instructions should be-

  • Text the word YES to 999
  • You will receive an automated text back.

You will now be registered to use the Emergency Text messaging service from you mobile phone.

For more information on the services of Aberfal First Aid, please visit our website email us at or call the team on 07968770756.

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Published on March 20th, 2014 and is filed under Blog.

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